Prince Charles says he was 'misled' by pedophile bishop, denies influencing abuse investigation
In 1997, Prince Charles had expressed his support for Bishop Ball through a letter in which he had also reportedly condemned one of Ball's accusers
Prince Charles' official statement about the disgraced Bishop Peter Ball who has been allegedly involved in a pedophile racket is out and he has denied trying to influence the police in their investigation of the pedophile bishop's case. The 69-year-old Prince was revealed to have once invited the bishop to his country home back in the 1990s. And now, in the lengthy statement that he's released to a special inquiry in Britain following the investigations, Charles shared that he was 'misled' by the bishop who had initially been found guilty in 2015 of several offenses against 18 men and was then jailed for nearly four years.
Charles' statement, read at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse on Friday, states: Prince Charles says, “At no stage did I ever seek to influence either of the police investigations and nor did I instruct or encourage my staff to do so.”
But back in 1997, Charles had expressed his support for the Bishop through a letter, in which he had also reportedly condemned one of Ball's accusers, as revealed by the recently released documents that the inquiry and ITV brought to light.
In his letter, Charles had told Bishop that the accuser, whom he later learned to be Neil Todd, was a “frightful, terrifying man” who was “up to his dastardly tricks again.” He had added, "I’ll see off this horrid man if he tries anything again.”
On Friday, Charles admitted to having initially believed the bishop as, after the police investigation into Todd's accusations, no charges were immediately filed either.
“That sequence of events seemed to support Mr. Ball’s claim that the complaint emanated from one individual, and that individual bore a grudge against him and was persecuting him, that the complaint was false, but that the individual had nonetheless profited from the complaint by selling his story,” Charles' statement read. “Events later demonstrated beyond any doubt, to my deep regret, that I, along with many others, had been misled.”
Inquiry looks into leak of Prince of Wales statement about paedophile Bishop of Chichester: The leaking to the media of a statement from the Prince of Wales about disgraced former Bishop of Chichester Peter Ball is being investigated by the Independent… https://t.co/CHcZhywAHi pic.twitter.com/kMyfCw6cSj— Around Hampshire (@aroundhampshire) July 23, 2018
But Charles's support for the bishop had continued even after the scandal broke out and he had had to resign. When Ball lost his home, Charles put him in touch with the Duchy of Cornwall, headed by his own self. He thus enabled Ball and his brother with a secure home; he even continued sending “small gifts of money" to the two of them, as the letter confirms.
But in his defense, he shares that the gravity of the complaint hadn't arrived to his attention until the court case against Ball in 2015.
He concluded his statement with, “My heart goes out to the victims of abuse and I applaud their courage as they rebuild their lives and, so often, offer invaluable support to others who have suffered. It remains a source of deep personal regret that I was one of many who was deceived over a long period of time about the true nature of Mr Ball’s activities. That is why I wanted to volunteer the facts in this letter, which I believe to be true, in the hope that they might be able to help your important work.”